7 Essential Pieces of Gear Every Filmmakers Needs

That age-old question: what gear should I get? In this episode of cinema5D essentials, I decided to answer this question once and for all, in a video as entertaining and educational as I could think of.

Which Gear Should I get?

For the last 9 years we’ve been constantly on a quest to find better gear to work with and make digital filmmaking easier and more affordable. As we like to work with the gear we test, my new Gear Guide is an attempt to share some of the experience I’ve had with the equipment along the way. Note that this gear guide reflects only Seb’s gear recommendations for the time being. The other authors of cinema5D will follow.

Essential Gear

Some of our regular readers will notice that the video is targeted at a broader audience looking for gear tips and recommendations. We receive requests for gear tips quite regularly but, even though we try to answer them individually, this can unfortunately be difficult sometimes due to our everyday workload.

Gear Used in the Video

The video should really speak for itself, so I will not go through the seven essential pieces of gear in this text. Instead, I would like to give you some background on the video production itself.

Camera

I used the Blackmagic URSA Mini 4.6K as it gave me beautiful, cinematic 4K rendering in a studio environment. I never use it outdoors, but in a studio environment there is no other affordable camera that’s so easy to use and gives such a pleasing picture. I went back and forth between camera and computer to check and implement my shots into the evolving editing timeline and it was an effortless process.

Lens

My lens of choice was the Zeiss CP.2 50mm Macro T/2.1. This is probably my favourite lens of all time and, although it’s bulky and expensive, whenever I put it on a camera I just love the image it gives me. Additionally, its macro design means I’m not as limited on how close I can get to an object. Bokeh and highlights are beautifully cinematic.

Lights

I mention the ALZO 3200 Low Noise in the video, which I used with the ALZO 36″ soft box. While it doesn’t have the best build quality, it is super affordable and is an extremely bright light with a great, clean white rendering. I used it as a key light for the top-shot gear photos and every single shot in the video. Due to its special design it is just a little inconvenient to use, but produces a relatively low fan noise.

The second light I used was the Aputure Light Storm 120d. It has a lower output than the ALZO, but delivers good light color and is convenient to use. I used this one with a 24″ Westcott beauty dish, the best soft box I know albeit not the largest, which makes it perfect for a back light. I added two additional CTB gels to give me that blue back-light tone on my skin.

The blue color in the video comes from a tiny light that will knock your socks off. The Luxli Viola 5″ is a very small LED that lets you dial in any color you like. It isn’t cheap, but it’s the perfect background color light and is super convenient to use. I have two of these, but only used one of them for the video.

Tripod

The Sachtler FSB-6 with quick legs was my tripod of choice. It’s getting on in years now and the FSB-8 would be a better option today, but it still gets the job done even though the URSA Mini is a bit on the heavy side.

I hope you found this video and gear lists helpful. We have never had a proper gear guide on cinema5D, but I know we’re one of the websites where people regularly look for gear tips. With over 3600 articles on our site, it can be pretty hard to find stuff, so hopefully this gear guide will make things a bit easier.

Let us know how you liked this episode of cinema5D essentials. And if you have gear tips of your own, why not share them with us and the rest of the world?

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